Fortune Plastics Inc. is opening a film and bag plant in Mundelein, Ill., that will work closely with an existing bag facility a mile away.
The film extruder and converter, based in Old Saybrook, Conn., opened the leased facility last week. The plant has more than 32,000 square feet of space and will employ about a dozen people.
The facility will make polyethylene film, trash-can liners and food bags, similar to what is made in most other Fortune facilities. The plant will be the headquarters for the company's Midwest region and give the company better reach across North America, said Andy Miles, vice president of sales and marketing.
The company will shift some production and sales staff from its Lebanon, Tenn., facility to the new plant, he said. Fortune also has plants in Connecticut, Arizona and Florida.
The firm has hired Dan Bancks, a flexible films executive with 24 years of experience, as sales manager for Fortune Plastics Midwest.
Fortune will use extrusion lines at another Mundelein facility, now making bags for industrial and hospital uses, to run some projects from the new plant if capacity becomes an issue, Miles said. That plant was purchased in 1999 when Fortune bought the assets of Parade Packaging Materials Co. and still is known as Parade Packaging.
``We will be getting support at Parade,'' Miles said. ``We have quite a good customer base in the area now, and we're putting extra focus on [the Midwest] for faster turnaround in the region.''
The new plant will have two single-layer lines, one of them purchased from Battenfeld Gloucester and the other shipped from Lebanon, he said. The older plant in Mundelein, about 35 miles from downtown Chicago, has six to seven lines and makes bags from both PE and polypropylene, Miles said.
Fortune has been owned since 1987 by Clondalkin Group Holdings Ltd. of Dublin, Ireland. The Connecticut company recorded 2004 sales of about $125 million and recently celebrated its 50th anniversary, Miles said.